Insider's Guide to Istanbul

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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4 star rating: Recommended 76 Reviews

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  • Location:Istanbul, Turkey
  • Duration:Varies

Big Bus Istanbul Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

Istanbul is one of the world’s greatest cities, and this hop-on hop-off Istanbul tour offers a truly flexible way to explore it. Choose a 24- or 48-hour pass, board your open-top, double-decker Istanbul hop-on hop-off bus at any stop along the two routes, and enjoy the views as you listen to the audio commentary. Then, create your own sightseeing itinerary as you hop on and off at any of the stops to visit highlights such as the spectacular Topkapi Palace,  the UNESCO-protected Hagia Sophia, the Egyptian Bazaar and many more!


  • Hop-on hop-off sightseeing tour of Istanbul
  • Create your own personalized sightseeing itinerary and explore Istanbul at leisure
  • See Dolmabahçe Palace, Sultanahmet Square, Topkapi Palace, Bosphorus Bridge and Taksim Square
  • Hop on and off as often as you like on a choice of two routes around the city
  • Enjoy informative and entertaining commentary on board the bus
  • Choose from a 24- or 48-hour hop-on hop-off tour ticket

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Big Bus Istanbul Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

See the sights of Istanbul on a hop-on hop-off tour of the city!

Simply hop aboard the open-top, double-decker Big Bus sightseeing bus and set out to witness the landmark sights of Istanbul, one of the world's most intriguing cities.

Straddling Europe and Asia, Istanbul is brim with UNESCO-listed treasures and historical sites that testify to its days under Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman rule. Add in colorful bazaars, village-like neighborhoods, the waterfronts along the Bosphorus Straits, and much, much more, and there’s a plethora of must-sees and attractions for visitors to enjoy and explore.

Sit back, relax and enjoy the views as you travel the two routes around the city and learn the stories behind the sights from the onboard audio commentary. 

When you’re ready, hop off at any of the stops to sightsee at your leisure. Perhaps step off to visit the spectacular Hagia Sophia — the ancient UNESCO-listed showstopper that served as an Ottoman mosque and a Christian basilica — or the ornate Topkapi Palace, the residence of the Ottoman sultans for more than 400 years.

Or maybe leave the bus to rove around the aromatic stalls of the Egyptian Bazaar (Spice Bazaar), visit the opulent Dolmabahçe Palace, or to soak up the buzz of Taksim Square. These are just a handful of the many things you can see and do during your hop-on hop-off Big Bus tour.

When you book, simply choose a 24- or 48-hour bus ticket for use on the two routes.
Red Route (2-hour full-loop duration with 11 stops):

  • Topkapi Palace
  • New Mosque (Yeni Camii)
  • Istanbul Modern (Tophane district)
  • Port of Istanbul
  • Dolmabahçe Palace
  • Bosphorus Bridge
  • W Hotel (Akaretler shopping district)
  • Taksim Square
  • Hard Rock Cafe
  • Egyptian Bazaar (Spice Bazaar)
  • Sultanahmet Square
Blue Route (1.25-hour full-loop duration with 7 stops):

  • Sultanahmet Square
  • New Mosque
  • Ecumenical Orthodox Patriarchate (near St Stephen’s Church and Golden Horn)
  • Eyüp cable car to Pierre Loti Café
  • Miniaturk
  • Rahmi M Koç Industrial Museum
  • Egyptian Bazaar (Spice Bazaar)
Click on the ‘View Additional Info’ button below to see the route maps.

View additional info

Customer Reviews

Natalie B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2016

Excellent...You get to see Istanbul and all the main attractions.The information on the headphones is very clear and informative and will definitely use this tour again.I did not get to take much pictures as I went on a day that was really cold and my hands were frozen 0and did not get to use my full 48 hours as I was sick with flu the following day, but enjoyed the tour immensely and was the highlight of my trip...100 recommend this tour.Bus is easy to locate and the connecting bus was waiting for us, the staff were helpful and friendly...VERY GOOD/çok güzel 0

Susan E

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2016

Great way to see and get around Istanbul. Goes to almost all of the major tourist destinations.

Zainab A

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

It was absolutely worth taking the hop-on hop off bus tour. I only went for 12 hours, and this tour was brilliant. It took us to all the main tourist sites. It is easy to find at Sultan Ahmet and buses run very regularly. Well recommended, and best way to explore the entire city. I would travel again in the Big Bus if i visit Istanbul again.

Sheila R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

This is a nice tour when you want to see the prime spots of Istanbul and you are only staying for a short period of time. It covers everything in 2 days.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

Excellent sightseeing tour. I recommend to all.

Howard R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

We had a great experience picking up the Bus close to the Blue Mosque and the Tour included crossing the Bridge into Asia I highly recommend both tours that are available

Kerry Dale V

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

My trip to Istanbul was great. The hop on hop off bus is the perfect way to see the city.

Nancy T

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2015

This tour was fantastic as it allowed us to get our bearings and the lay out of the city. A MUST DO...

Evelyn H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2015

Had a fantastic time was on my own and had a blast and felt really safe lots of lovely people.

Maurice M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2015

Fabulous excursion with the added bonus of crossing a bridge into Asia Minor! Loved Istanbul!

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Tour code: 6294ISTHOHO


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